For reference, DD will be 3 in December and is no longer breastfeeding. She has pretty much always slept in our bed. We tried briefly when she was an infant to get her to sleep in her own bed, and were unsuccessful, so we just kept her with us. She sleeps through the night pretty much every night. But we have a couple problems.
1. Even though she sleeps through the night, she moves all over the place and DH and I are woken up several times a night by her movement. - We are both just tired and feeling like we need our space.
2. We are not good at bedtime AT ALL (or nap time) She absolutely does not go to sleep on her own, but will happily go to bed with us when she knows that we are all going to bed. So this has resulted in her no longer taking naps, and then she stays up until we go to bed at 10 or so. (we get to sleep in mornings, so I think she is getting enough sleep)
We can get her to sleep and then move her to a toddler bed in our room, but I am hoping to get her to go to sleep in the toddler bed, bonus points if I can get her to go to sleep in the toddler bed at least an hour earlier than us :) If I can't get her in the toddler bed, I would at least like to get her to go to sleep in our bed an hour earlier than us.
I just don't even know where to start!
Thanks for any help you can give!
I have nothing to offer in the way of experience, since my daughter is only 9 months old. I just wanted to say that the prospect of a toddler who happily stays up until my husband and myself head to bed, is assisted to sleep the sleeps all night (!!!!), sounds like a DREEEEEAAM. I'd relish in it and slowly add a mattress for her to sleep in then inch that mattress away, little by little.
Or you could try making a big deal out of a "big girl bed" and decorate her room really special. Another method I've heard of is to spend time sleeping with her in her big girl room, then start taking little breaks and leaving her alone for little periods during the falling asleep phase, saying things like, "I have to go to the bathroom, I'll be right back." (and really do come back!!) and little by little increase the amount of time while you're away, always returning when you say you will to keep the trust. I think this method takes a long time!
Anyway, I'm interested in hearing other responses from people with actual experience on this one!
We go straight from the family bed to a twin mattress around 2. Mom or Dad lays down with the little one on their bed until they fall asleep. They usually sleep till early morning, at which point they come into our room and climb in bed with us for a couple hours. If they happen to wake up earlier, we can decide if we want to go back to their room with them and help them settle down or just let them finish the night with us. Sometimes we make a little bed on the floor that they are allowed to come to in the event that the bed is too full (like when there is another baby in it!) Its a gradual process, but usually around 4-5 years old they are ok to fall asleep on their own with just a tuck in and a good night kiss and will sleep clear till morning. I have used this process with 4 kids and about to do it again with our 5th in preparation for our new baby coming in November. Its worked really well for us! Hope that helps!
Mom to DS(17) DS(15) DS(12) My gifted, quirky, wonderful teens!
Mama to Jack 11.08 and Liam 9.11 and due with boy #6!
Blissfully married to the love of my life since 8.8.8
It's been a looong time for me, as I have a 10 1/2-year-old, but I know I'll face this again soon, since now I have a 7-month-old. :)
With my son, he self-weaned at 2 1/2, and then I transitioned him into his own bed gradually. Like EarthMama said, I would go in there with him and cuddle him until he fell asleep.
We followed the same bedtime routine every night, first with a bedtime story, and then snuggling. Sometimes he would come to my bed early in the morning. It was about 50-50 for a few years. Around the age of 4 or 5, he stayed longer in his own bed, and he stopped coming to my bed completely by about 6 or 7.
I know it sounds like a long and roundabout transition, but she will go to her own bed and eventually stay there.
Mumsy to Gavin (10-year-old artsy boy) and Rowan (baby disco queen!)
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